Toronto Now a Star in Film, TV Productions

Toronto has long been a spot for film, turning the shots into whatever city is needed. New York, Chicago, Berlin – Toronto has been crafted into them. The tide is changing and now dramas are not only being shot in Toronto but the city is starring as well.

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is being filmed in Toronto at the moment. Stars Michael Cera, Chris Evans and Brandon Routh can be spotted around town. A Starbucks on Spadina has served the young Cera a few times. One server who wishes not to be named told Digital Journal that the young star is friendly. While the spotting of the stars is nice for the city what’s more impressive is that Toronto is becoming the focus of many films.

Pizza Pizza can be seen as it really is. Casa Loma is featured as a real place in a battle scene. The spots that mean something to Torontonians are getting filmed as they are really known. Scott Pilgrim is a graphic novel set in Toronto.

Toronto can thank Hollywood writers for the nod to the city. Had it not been for the writer’s strike in 2007 Toronto may not be getting the recognition that it is now. When the writers in the States were striking Canadian shows started filtering onto US screens.

The Globe and Mail reports:

“Bathurst Street is practically the cerebral cortex of Scott Pilgrim,” said Miles Dale, one of the film’s producers, who stood at the back of the set wearing the de rigueur producer’s uniform of jeans, baseball cap and chin stubble. He also produced, among others, Hollywoodland (shot in Toronto but set in Los Angeles) and Talk to Me (shot in Toronto but set in Washington, D.C.). Mr. Dale calls Scott Pilgrim vs. the World – based on a series of graphic novels by Toronto writer Bryan Lee O’Malley – “the biggest movie ever identifiably set in Toronto. The books are super-specific in their local details, and Edgar Wright, from the beginning, was set on using images from the books. Universal never suggested setting it anywhere else.”

Atom Egoyan’s next film, Chloe, was meant to take place in San Francisco while being filmed in Toronto. The director convinced his French backers to switch the setting to Toronto. Because of that switch stars Julianne Moore, Liam Neeson and Amanda Seyfried are being filmed on McCaul Street, College Street, at the University of Toronto and other places around the city.

Flashpoint is a new hit TV show and also being filmed with Toronto as its backdrop. The Eaton Centre has been featured as well as other downtown spots.

Toronto has arrived. Being one of the Queen Bee’s for setting gives the city Hollywood clout.

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